[lbo-talk] A Crisis of Neo-liberalism or a Crisis of Captialism?" by Christopher Carrico

CHRISTOPHERR CARRICO ccarrico at temple.edu
Mon Dec 12 06:56:21 PST 2011

>From "A Crisis of Neo-liberalism or a Crisis of Captialism?" by
Christopher Carrico

“Is it possible for the current crisis to be resolved by a return to more ‘moderate’ capitalist policies such as those of Keynesianism or of the welfare state policies pursued by so many advanced industrial countries from WWII until the 1970s?”

If we believe that current crisis of the economic system is a crisis of neo-liberalism, one possible way to resolve the crisis would seem to be a return to economic policies that would address the problem of under-consumption through jobs stimulus or through the expansion of the social safety net. Taxes could be raised on corporations; government could be directly involved in the business of jobs creation, for instance through investments on building infrastructure; and social welfare benefits could be expanded, rather than contracted as is currently proposed by the Republicans.

As far as most American progressives are concerned, such a change would represent a return to the “normal” functioning of American capitalism, modeled on the situation that was true in the U.S. during the post-WWII economic boom. During this time there was strong economic growth, and this growth was accompanied by improving economic conditions for all classes.

So why do Republicans so stridently oppose a return to the normalcy of Keynesianism or of the Welfare State? Why does Capital dedicate so much money and effort to making sure that taxes are not increased on the wealthy, that the last remnants of a social safety net are ripped away, that the last vestiges of organized labor (concentrated in public sector unions) are destroyed? Is it simply because they are greedy? Is it simply because they are selfish, or mean-spirited? I would suggest that the answer is not that simple. I would suggest that Capital, cannot, as Capital, concede to demands for a return to a social welfare state.

See full post here: http://asitoughttobe.com/2011/12/11/insurgent-anthropologies-a-crisis-of-neo-liberalism-or-a-crisis-of-capitalism/

More information about the lbo-talk mailing list